Still alive: The Dolphins picked up a victory in a must-win game at a crucial time. Miami was on a four-game losing streak and facing internal issues. Few NFL teams needed a win more than the Dolphins. This was a telling performance that Miami hasn’t given up on its season. Its second-half schedule is much easier and could provide an opportunity to string together some wins. The Dolphins beat a talented Bengals team that has a solid chance of making the playoffs. The win doesn’t guarantee Miami will make the playoffs, but it prevented the Dolphins from putting a bow on their season at the midpoint of their schedule.
Wake quake: Dolphins Pro Bowl defensive end Cameron Wake finally looked like himself again. Wake registered three sacks and a forced fumble against Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton. Wake’s final sack was a safety in overtime that finished the game. It was only the third time in NFL history an overtime game ended on a safety. Wake has been working to overcome a knee injury and hadn’t registered a sack since Week 1. Miami’s defense is much better when Wake is productive. His three-sack explosion puts him at a team-high 5.5 sacks for the season.
Miller time: Is it finally Lamar Miller’s time to shine in Miami's offense? The Dolphins appear to be coming around to the idea of feeding Miller the football. He rushed for a career-high 105 yards on 16 carries. Miller has received 34 carries in the past two games. The Dolphins have been capable of running the ball, but offensive coordinator Mike Sherman often abandoned the run too quickly this season. Miller has split time with Daniel Thomas this year but is starting to separate himself.
Martin saga continues: Winning cured some of Miami’s issues. However, the Dolphins still have to deal with the situation involving starting right tackle Jonathan Martin. Multiple sources told ESPN.com that Martin became upset Monday and left the team after some ribbing from teammates. Martin reportedly is dealing with stress and emotional issues, and it’s unknown when he will return. Tyson Clabo played his best game of the season against the Bengals. But Martin’s situation leads to questions about the leadership and culture in Miami’s locker room.